It is time to get stuck in with some bulb planting for next year’s display. Bulbs are very easy to grow and you can choose from the traditional Daffodils, Crocuses and Tulips or the more exotic Alliums or Puschkinia .
Choosing your bulbs
When choosing your spring bulbs it is important to choose the highest quality. Choose bulbs that are firm and plump that have no signs of damage or bruising. You can be assured that Perrywood stocks only ethically sourced, high quality bulbs from reputable suppliers. Most bulbs can be planted straight after purchasing them but its worth leaving tulips until October or November as they will not begin to produce roots until the weather turns colder.
Creating dazzling displays
Bulbs do not like to sit in wet soil so dig in plenty of organic matter and some sand to help improve the drainage, particularly in clay soil. The general rule of thumb is to plant them three or four times the depth of the bulb but packets should normally provide this information.
Bulbs work well in an informal setting, taking inspiration from the woodlands and Mediterranean meadows that many of them originate from. A carpet of Bluebells, Snowdrops, Daffodils, Crocus or Wild Garlic can brighten a wooded area or a sweeping lawn.
- Perrywood top tip: To create a really natural-looking display, near the base of trees or in the grass, simply scatter your bulbs randomly. The aim is to create a display that looks completely natural so throw the bulbs up into the air and plant them where they land. Even the most reluctant gardener will be happy to join in with this exercise!
Smaller bulbs such as Crocus and Bluebells can be planted into the lawn by cutting into the grass and folding the turf back to allow the bulbs to be planted into the soil underneath. Larger bulbs such as daffodils can be planted into a lawn with the aid of a bulb planter. As you should wait for the foliage to die back before you begin mowing the lawn in spring (to put nutrients back into the soil) you may wish to plant your bulbs in a more defined area so you can mow around them.
If you don’t have much space bulbs are ideal for tubs and planters. Dwarf Daffodils, Tulips and Iris go really well with Winter Pansies and Aubrietia, and peep out suddenly when you have forgotten all about them. Put drainage crocks in the bottom of your planter so the bulbs do not sit in excess water, if this happens they will rot away.
Bulbs for indoor scent and colour
Some bulbs are ideal for growing inside and bring colour and heady fragrances to your home. They can also be fun for children to grow. Try Hyacinths in growing glasses so you can enjoy the roots as well as the shoots. The ‘pre prepared’ varieties are the ones to go for, as they will flower at Christmas. Amaryllis can be very dramatic in a pot on the window sill or in the empty fireplace. And there are certain types of Daffodils, such as ‘Paperwhites’, which are traditionally grown inside for their lovely scent.
- Perrywood top tip: If you know you will have a house full of visitors at Christmas plant bulbs now for that perfect indoor display.